Marketing's inevitable adoption of global warming has begun this season. Suit makers that weave their own cloth, such as Scabal and Zegna, are emphasizing new fabrics that look wintry but make up into garments with the weight of summer suits. The photos are from Scabal's ready to wear collection.
Lighter weight cloth makes for a perfectly comfortable garment, as long as the wearer remains in a heated space. It's a trend that makes money for the mills, as they can make more cloth from less wool, and promotes sales of overcoats at the same time. Of course, the coats are also lighter, to the point that a man wearing one of the new suits with one of the overcoats might not want to spend too much time outdoors in Minneapolis, Montreal or Moscow.
Personally, I don't see any reason to own a Fall suit that weighs less than 11 ounces. Even that's a bit light for walking around Manhattan in mid-winter, and New York's weather is relatively mild. And, curmudgeon that I am, I think 13 ounce cloth provides the best combination of drape, temperature control and wrinkle resistance. But I don't buy for Nieman Marcus and what you see there is lighter weight.
The three button look is what was on the street in London and Paris this summer, and we can expect to continue to see it in the Fall. Scabal's version is better than much of what I saw - three buttons done wrong can easily look too boxy and this one doesn't have that problem.
But, global warming or not, I'd be concerned about the weight.
Photographs are Copyright © Scabal. All rights reserved.